MetaNewsletter – October 2017

MetaNewsletter – October 2017

Don’t miss our special 20% end of year course discount in our latest MetaNewsletter. Also in this month’s edition, you can download two presentations from events that MetaPM held in the last month, as well as learning about all the upcoming courses, news and employment opportunities at MetaPM.

Never miss a MetaPM Newsletter by subscribing to MetaPM’s mailing list. Subscribe here.

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PRINCE2 2017 – What’s the Difference?

PRINCE2 2017 – What’s the Difference?

By David Schrapel, PRINCE2 Trainer – MetaPM

PRINCE2 is widely considered the leading project management method. In July, AXELOS, the accrediting body of PRINCE2, launched their first update of PRINCE2 since 2009. As one of the leading providers of PRINCE2 Certification in Melbourne, MetaPM is one of the first organisations to now offer the new updated PRINCE2 2017 Foundation and Practitioner Courses.

On September 20, MetaPM hosted a briefing session on the changes between the old PRINCE2 syllabus and the new 2017 update.

You can download the presentations from the briefing by downloading below.

Briefing Session Presentation

PRINCE2 2017

 

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MetaPM Newsletter – August 2017

MetaPM Newsletter – August 2017

In this month’s edition of the MetaPM Newsletter, we will be highlighting the new update of PRINCE2, as well as all the upcoming courses, news and employment opportunities at MetaPM.

PRINCE2 is widely considered the leading project management method. In July, AXELOS, the accrediting body of PRINCE2, launched their first update of PRINCE2 since 2009. As a leading provider of PRINCE2 Certification in Melbourne, MetaPM is one of the first organisations to now offer the new updated PRINCE2 2017 Foundation and Practitioner Courses.

Never miss a MetaPM Newsletter by subscribing to MetaPM’s mailing list. Subscribe here.

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Enterprise Project Management and Strategy – MetaBreakfast Presentation

Enterprise Project Management and Strategy – MetaBreakfast Presentation

By Rob Loader, Director of Capital Planning & Delivery – Telstra | Dallas Wilkinson, Principal Consultant, MetaPM

On September 14, 2017, MetaPM hosted a Metabreakfast Seminar Event on the topic of ‘Enterprise Project Management and Strategy’. We were very fortunate to have Rob Loader, the Director of Capital Planning & Delivery at Telstra, provide his insights on the topic and how it relates to Telstra. Dallas Wilkinson, a Principal Consultant at MetaPM also presented, providing a high-level overview on the correlation of EPM and organisational strategy.

You can download the presentations from the seminar by downloading below.

Enterprise Project Management

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Blog – What Everybody Should Know About PRINCE2 2017

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What Everybody Should Know About PRINCE2® 2017

Introduction

PRINCE2’s certifying body—AXELOS—recently published an updated version of the PRINCE2 project management method, that reflects an evolution in the project management training world. This sees the first major update of PRINCE2 since 2009. As one of the first Accredited Training Organisations to offer the new PRINCE2 2017 courseware, we are providing an overview of the changes to the methodology/syllabus. For readers who need PRINCE2 certification, this guide serves as an outline of relevant information.

While PRINCE2 has always been tailorable, and versatile enough to handle the complexities and requirements of different projects, recently, it has garnered a reputation for being inflexible and procedure-heavy. AXELOS has taken on board this feedback and consequently, the update addresses the following:

  • Greater emphasis on scalability and flexibility;
  • More clarity on how the themes and principles are connected;
  • More emphasis on the core principles of PRINCE2;
  • Significantly more hints, tips, and examples of how to apply the new guidance;
  • Higher readability and greater support regarding tailoring the program;
  • Removal of configuration management.

Differences: Principles

There is very little change regarding the underlying principles of PRINCE2. With the updated version, there is actually a greater emphasis on these principles, however, they have added a key message for each principle which should help those to help understand the principles better and assist with those taking the Foundation exam.

Differences: Tailoring

Unlike in the PRINCE2 2009 version, the tailoring text is toward the front of the updated PRINCE2 2017 manual, making it more accessible to readers. There is specific guidance on Agile adoption and frequent references to using PRINCE2 with Agile. The update also includes specific guidance about recognising the minimum requirements for a PRINCE2 project and on making selective, but good use of the method, appropriate to the scale of the project at hand.

The main focus is on how to utilise PRINCE2 in an organisation with relevant topics such as:

  • Embedding PRINCE2 into an organisation;
  • Tailoring it to fit the organisation.

Additional tailoring topics include:

  • Tailoring the terminology
  • Tailoring the principles
  • Tailoring the roles
  • Tailoring the themes
  • Tailoring the management products
  • Tailoring the methodology

Differences: Themes

PRINCE2 2017 maintains the same seven themes from the previous incarnation being: Plans, Risk, Progress, Change, Quality, Organisation, Business Case. However, each of the themes now has additional support information. This new information is the minimum requirements for each theme and a guidance for implementation.

The PRINCE2 2017 Exams

The syllabus and exams have been streamlined in PRINCE2 2017. There is much more emphasis on Applying PRINCE2 in the exams.

Foundation Exam

There are now 60 questions instead of 75. The foundation exam’s pass mark has been readjusted to 33. There are also fewer negative and list questions.

Practioner Exam

This exam tests candidates on all aspects of the methodology, thereby rendering all aspects of the methodology relevant for the exam.

There are fewer questions about management products; instead, there’s a focus on practical application and operation in a project environment. The amount of additional material is also reduced.

There are 68 questions instead of 80, and all of the questions about response, assertion, and reasoning have been removed. The pass mark is now 38.

Although many of the changes between PRINCE2 2009 and 2017 are subtle, there are enough differences that make retraining important. For readers who haven’t been trained on the new material, re-sitting the course will be very helpful.


Get Certified in PRINCE2 2017 with MetaPM

As a leading provider of PRINCE2 Certification in Melbourne, MetaPM is one of the first organisations to now offer the new updated PRINCE2 2017 Foundation and Practitioner Courses.

Click here for more information on the course and to register

MetaPM Newsletter – July 2017

MetaPM Newsletter – July 2017

MetaPM has released its newsletter for the month of July. Studies show that nearly 60% of organisations consider organisational capabilities such as project and talent management atop-three priority, yet investment into capability development does not reflect its significance. Investments in structures and systems are wasted if your people do not have the capability or competency to successfully meet their deliverables. It is paramount to assess your staff’s competency as to identify how to properly develop your talent and if necessary, bring in new talent with greater capability.

Never miss a MetaPM Newsletter by subscribing to MetaPM’s mailing list. Subscribe here.

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Staff Testimonials – Darren Clifford’s Story


Meet Darren Clifford

Senior Business Analyst

With MetaPM since 2015

MetaPM clients that Darren has worked with:

  • Sportsbet
  • Australian Catholic University
  • Charles Sturt University
  • Catholic Church Insurance

Darren Clifford

What do you enjoy most about working @ MetaPM?

The people, both MetaPM and clients. Projects come and go but it’s the people that you worked with that you remember. They’re the ones that you catch-up for lunch or drinks when the projects’ long since delivered.

If you were to describe our company in 3 words, what would they be?

Expert Project Delivery.

What do you like most about your job?

I love the variety. Not just in clients but in tasks and projects. I’m not one for daily routine and I like to be challenged. I like that my projects are all different and that I meet and interact with different people, different industries, and different ways of working. Every day is both a learning and teaching experience.

What does a typical working day look like for you?

It really depends on the project but it always involves client interaction. Whether it be a workshop with the business, review with a technical team, or a demonstration from a vendor. Rare are the times when I am sitting at my computer for the entire day.

What is one of the most interesting tasks / projects you have worked on?

I’ve worked for clients from on-line wagering, to higher education, and to insurance companies. I think that when you’ve worked at Sportsbet and Catholic Church Insurance, it’s fair to say that you’ve covered a wide the range of clients. I’d say that Sportsbet was the most interesting client mostly because I have an interest in sports even though my project wasn’t related to the betting, it was still a great environment.

If you were to recommend us to someone who would it be and why?

I have recommended MetaPM to a number of my former colleagues. Some have been employed for contracts and some are still waiting for the right opportunity. It is a great place to work and the support available to consultants is amazing. The BA practice is growing and it’s a good time to be part of it.

What led you to become a consultant?

My first full-time job was with a consulting firm. So, really, it’s how I thought work was in the IT industry. I enjoyed the project based work and moving around with different clients. I’ve worked at organisations before as part of the IT department but missed the variety that consulting brings. I also enjoy the client interaction and stakeholder management side of the roles. It’s something I found I had an aptitude for and have really tried to build on that.

What gives you the greatest satisfaction in your role?

There are a number of elements from which I draw satisfaction. One is the feeling when the requirements that you’ve created come to fruition in a solution. Another is that point when a BA becomes a trusted advisor to the business. To know that you have earned the confidence of the business is something else. It’s even more meaningful when it is in an industry that you’ve never worked in before.

What’s one interesting thing about you that not many people know of?

I love Karaoke. I absolutely suck at singing but I will willingly get up and sing karaoke stone cold sober. The one thing that I think ruins karaoke nights are people that can really sing. Rack off and go try out for The Voice or X-Factor and stop ruining everyone’s fun. Good karaoke nights become sing-a-longs for everyone in the room.

Blog – The Organisational and Staff Benefits of Competency Assessments

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The Organisational and Staff Benefits of Competency Assessments

The concept of a competency assessment is the kind of thing that can result in some initial anxiety for candidates, employees, and project managers. If it leads to a workplace with unnecessary tensions, the result could be a skewed perspective of the actual competency of the assessment. Because of this, it’s important to make it clear right from the start how beneficial such a process can be for both individual staff members and for the organisation as a whole.

Such assessments are becoming increasingly important to the modern workforce, where technology is levelling the business playing field.

Competency assessments allow a company to identify the skills available for certain tasks and jobs, and to recruit and develop employees who possess those skills where there are gaps. This not only leads to a more efficient team but also puts employees in a better position for capability development so they can further their careers.

Organisational benefits

There is nothing more frustrating than sitting in an interview with a candidate that clearly does not fit the position of which they’re applying. The awkwardness permeates the room, and the thought likely crosses everyone’s mind that it could all have been avoided. A competency assessment is a good way to do this, through a simple process that helps an organisation determine early on whether a candidate fits a role, or if they may be more suited for a different area in the company, if applicable.

This can produce dramatic results, by making sure people with the right skills are brought on and avoiding churn in staff, where possibly months of investment is lost (i.e. recruitment costs, on-boarding, and knowledge transfer time) with little value gained. Having a stable and appropriately skilled project delivery workforce enables better workforce planning and can lead to greater project throughput with the same size workforce.

Increased results, however, are not the only benefit, as this process also helps to mitigate risks by empowering the right people in positions where their skills are put to the best possible use. Project management will see a marked improvement to project delivery timelines, putting the company in a better position to take on clients who require faster and more accurate delivery.

A competency assessment can also increase the return on investment for companies that have implemented training programs. It continues to be expensive just to train an average employee for a role, and training programs are often run without an understanding the need or value gained. If that training investment is underpinned by scientific knowledge that the employee gains the required skills to fulfil a role, it is far more likely that the investment will pay future dividends.

Staff benefits

While the organisation will see obvious benefits from using competency assessments, this process will also give staff a clearer direction as they progress in their careers. The resulting higher employee satisfaction rates will ultimately lead to higher employee retention rates, and the overall positive atmosphere works to create more successful recruitment.

Rather than simply placing each staff member into broad groupings, such assessments allow management to focus on more targeted development plans in the development cycle process, as well as a more efficient perspective on coaching and mentoring individual talent.

Perhaps the most underrated and least-considered benefit for both organisations and staff is the enhanced engagement with staff, including understanding the goals and motivation that drives performance and success. It also gives visibility of the aggregate organisational capabilities based on the combined strengths of its staff, and sometime uncovers unique and unexpected talents that can be leveraged to innovate and maintain competitive advantage.


 

MetaPM’s Capability Framework and Competency Assessment Services

MetaPM’s Project Community Capability Framework service offering supports organisations who are invested in creating career pathways and professional development for their project professionals. The framework helps organisations build project community capability by incorporating a set of skills, behaviours and knowledge supported by processes and tools based on recognised standards.

We work with Executives, PMO and HR functions within your organisation to develop a project role family assessment and capability development framework based on industry recognised competency frameworks.

Click here for further details on our service offering and an overview of MetaPM’s Project Community Capability Framework.

Or contact us at [email protected] or on 1800 800 436

Staff Testimonials – Jonny Bithell’s Story


Meet Jonny Bithell

Project Management Consultant

With MetaPM since 2016

MetaPM clients that Jonny has worked with:

  • Victorian Managed Insurance Asscoiation
  • The University of Melbourne
  • Bupa
  • Telstra

Jonny Bithell

What do you enjoy most about working @ MetaPM

Being part of the MetaPM family, and it is family, allows me to go to work knowing I have a challenge ahead, security in the role, and a strong team behind me; ultimately enabling me to deliver a great service to our clients and strategic partners. The company offers a diverse set of opportunities across all Industries, including Government, Education, Telco and Insurance Sectors, to mention but a few. My experiences alone has seen my delivering an Agile technical implementation in one client to acting as a scheduler across large digital transformation programme in another. To enable this, MetaPM provide an extremely strong support team behind the scenes, providing access to specialist SMEs and Senior Practice Managers when required, a knowledge management portal for each practice providing relevant templates and supporting literature, or even just a reassuring phone call allowing you to query your thinking or approach to relevant activities or issues. MetaPM really take the time to be a part of your work life, whilst also making sure this is balanced with your home life. They want you to be successful and do their upmost to provide the foundations to enable this!

If you were to describe our company in 3 words, what would they be?

Loyal, Honest, Humble.

What do you like most about your job?

Variety of the role, the people I work with, and the consistent challenge. It may get hectic at times but I certainly don’t get bored… you just don’t have time!

What does a typical working day look like for you?

A typical working day involves a morning gym or yoga session in order to get mind and body primed for the day; finding that inner Zen everyone seems to talk about. Next step and I must state usually my most enjoyable part of the day, I find myself attempting to squeeze onto one of Melbourne’s most spacious Trams! Into the office for 0830hrs to start the day with emails and a nice cup of tea (note as an Englishman only the finest UK imported tea bags will suffice). In my current role as an Integrator for Telstra, working within Cloud services, I am responsible for getting a project and its solution operationally accepted by the business. Working across multiple projects, my daily activities will vary depending on the type and stages of each of these projects.

Usually, my day entails engaging the operational teams and SMEs across L1, L2, L3, L4 (and Vendor where applicable), on behalf of the project, to ensure the project deliverables are created, reviewed, and endorsed. Types of deliverables include Scope, Business cases, Solution Designs (SAD & DLDs), Support Plans and Operate Models. To close, this culminates in the final project stage gate, where I am responsible for ensuring Operations formally confirm their ‘Acceptance to Operate’ (ATO) and the project can Go-Live.

My days are always extremely varied and require me to engage with all kinds of stakeholders within the business, alongside external vendors. With this Client also being Globally located, I can find myself engaging and managing resources in Sydney, Adelaide, India, and even the UK, all in a single day!

My day closes, usually, around 1800hrs, with a quick catch up on emails and ensuring my calendar is up to date for the next 2-3 days. I also ensure I write a single bullet point outcome that I intend to achieve for each of the next day’s meeting. This is something I picked up and really works in focusing the mind for the next day.

What is one of the most interesting tasks / projects you have worked on?

My first role with MetaPM involved me leading the design and development of a Risk Scorecard Framework and Assessment Tool with one of our Government Clients, to be rolled out to all Victorian Government agencies. This project involved me conducting a procurement process to identify and engage the appropriate solution in the marketplace whilst ensuring all of the governance and strict requirements around public procurement were adhered to – challenging but good fun!

If you were to recommend us to someone who would it be and why?

I think I stated this in why I enjoy working @ MetaPM, but I will summarise:

  • It is more than an organisation
  • You are not a number
  • People care about what you do
  • No one wants you to fail
  • You are set up to succeed

With the required professional skills, a good work ethos and a great sense of humour, MetaPM’s the perfect place to make your next career move!

What led you to become a consultant?

A career in consulting interested me due to the variety and dynamic nature of the role. As someone who always wants to be busy, this role allows me to work with lots of different people, face new and difficult challenges, and finally experience diverse business cultures and environments.

These facets of the job will mould and shape my career; and are applicable to any future role I may find myself in!

What gives you the greatest satisfaction in your role?

Prior to coming to Australia, previous roles included leading projects at Clarks, a well-known global footwear brand, and a brief role in the UK Royal Air Force Reserves. Both these experiences involved me working with people, all with the aim of achieving a common goal.
The fact I can continue to do this every day with MetaPM and the clients we work with, makes working for a living worth it!

What’s one interesting thing about you that not many people know of?

I’ve got ginger hair … turns out you get stick in Australia too. :)

Staff Testimonial – Sara Hollis’ Story


Meet Sara Hollis

Business Analyst

With MetaPM since 2016

MetaPM clients that Sara has worked with:

  • City of Port Phillip

Sara Hollis

What do you enjoy most about working @ MetaPM

The culture. I have found MetaPM to be an extremely supportive organisation that genuinely treats its employees as its greatest assets. I have no doubts that if I was having difficulties with anything at my client site that there would be a number of people I could turn to for help and advice.

If you were to describe our company in 3 words, what would they be?

  • Motivated
  • Professional
  • Supportive

What do you like most about your job?

I love the challenge of working on complex projects and managing stakeholders and requirements from a wide range of business areas.

What does a typical working day look like for you?

My typical day would see me working on-site with one of our clients, City of Port Phillip. I’m currently working as the Lead BA on an Asset Management Transformation Project which is currently in planning stages.

What is one of the most interesting tasks / projects you have worked on?

This client engagement is the first I’ve been involved with through MetaPM, so my experience has been primarily the Asset Management Transformation Project. This project is expected to span approximately 3 years and will impact staff, systems and data across the organisation.

If you were to recommend us to someone who would it be and why?

I would recommend MetaPM to contractors who are looking for new opportunities. MetaPM have been extremely supportive of me, both in helping me to find the right role for my skills and in supporting me in my role once I’ve started. I’ve found this to be a much more positive experience than that offered by any other recruitment or consultancy service I’ve been exposed to.

What led you to become a consultant?

I was drawn to the flexibility of consulting and the opportunity to apply my skills to projects in different industries.

What gives you the greatest satisfaction in your role?

Working with a client in the public sector, I get great satisfaction in knowing that the work I’m doing will be helping my client to more efficiently provide services to the wider community.

What’s one interesting thing about you that not many people know of?

I’m not entirely sure what people would find interesting! I’m a passable salsa dancer and I love playing board games in my spare time.